Southwestern College degree will be available to active Army personnel
throughout the world with the announcement Dec. 31 that Southwestern
has been selected as one of 32 colleges and universities in the United
States approved to participate in eArmyU.
studies degree, offered online through the professional studies program,
will be an option to soldier-students
beginning July 7. Although
exact projections of enrollment figures are not possible, organizers have
speculated that several hundred enrollments in this degree program
are within reach. In
all, about 70,000 servicemen are expected to participate in all of the eArmyU
As participants in the eArmyU program,
active servicemen are provided tuition and technical assistance (such
as laptop and Internet access)
to take online
courses wherever they are deployed. Only 32 colleges and universities survived
an extensive application and screening process to become eArmyU providers,
including such prestigious institutions as Indiana University, and UCLA.
“We were in exactly the right place
at the right time with our leadership in online learning, and this
allowed us to be able to show during the selection
process that we are able to provide the classes and services that will
make the online degree possible,” says Karen Pedersen, vice
president for professional studies.
Soldier-students will access their
courses through the Internet, in the
same way students in SC’s six online majors complete classes. Assignments
are completed and submitted online, and online discussions with classmates
and instructors provide a learning community for the learners.
“We feel our pastoral studies degree
is excellent preparation for persons who hope someday to be chaplains,” Pedersen
says, “but it also is
appropriate for individuals who are looking to pastor a church following
their service commitments and want to be ready to apply for seminary,
or simply for
enlisted personnel who are interested in strengthening their own personal
The initial selection as an eArmyU provider
was an important milestone, as the college hopes to eventually increase
the number of degrees approved
for enrollment by service personnel, Pedersen adds. For example,
management degree (offered both online and in traditional classes)
would seem to be a logical choice for persons with military experience,
For more information on eArmyU, see the
Web site at www.sckans.edu/eArmyU, or call professional studies,
Tightens Budget Belt
The slumping economy and a smaller-than-expected
freshman class have combined to prompt tightened budgets at Southwestern
The college has reduced its $15 million
budget by $500,000, and in January
the SC Board of Trustees approved a budget and financial plan designed to
ensure continued financial viability.
“No institution or business is immune to outside economic forces, and we
have to tighten our belts like every other organization is doing right now,” says
President Dick Merriman.
Although total enrollment at the college set a record during the fall of
2002, the 1,306 headcount was largely due to outstanding numbers in professional
studies, graduate, and online programs. The freshman class was about 30
less than had been expected based on previous year enrollments.
the Southwestern student’s educational experience has been
paramount as administrators examined where budget cuts could be made,
Merriman emphasizes. No faculty positions were lost; financial aid was
Reductions, instead, came mostly from
support and auxiliary programs. The Horsefeathers and Applesauce
summer dinner theatre program,
reduced its schedule
to one production from four.
The college also is in negotiations with the Winfield school district
(Unified School District 465) to have the school take over operation
of the swimming
pool in White Physical Education Building. The high school uses the
facility extensively for its swim teams, while the college utilizes
it only a
few hours each semester. (No other KCAC school has a pool.)
staff positions were eliminated, and duties of these persons have
been reassigned to other personnel.
“Decisions like these are painful, but we feel confident that as the college
comes through this situation Southwestern will be stronger,” Merriman says. “In
the meantime, we especially need the financial support of our alumni and
Communications Efforts Earn Top Awards
Southwestern College went head-to-head
with major universities throughout the Midwest in the annual Council
for the Advancement and
Education (CASE) District VI awards program, and came away with
three gold and two silver awards.
Results of the competition were
announced Jan. 14 in Kansas City.
As the preeminent professional
organization for alumni, communications, and fundraising professionals
in higher education, CASE attracts
entries from throughout the eight-state Mid-America District
to its annual
competition. Schools are not divided by enrollment.
winning entries included:
Gold — Excellence in Communications, Periodicals: The Southwesterner,
Sara Weinert, editor; Sunni Sheets, designer; Joni Rankin, news bureau
coordinator; Rhett Joy, Web producer; Ralph Decker and Nan Hinson (institutional
advancement staff members), alumni notes editors.
Gold — Excellence in Writing, Speech: “We Chose You: The
President’s Address to Freshmen” by Dick Merriman.
Gold — Excellence in Fundraising Materials, Video: “Builders
of Excellence,” Gerret Warner and Mimi Gredy, Warner and Company,
Silver — Excellence in Graphic Design, Periodicals: The Southwesterner,
Sunni Sheets, designer.
Silver — Excellence in Fundraising Materials, Brochures: “Builders
of Excellence,” Susan Burdick, designer; Sara Weinert, editor.
“Being recognized as having the best entries among so many outstanding
communications programs is a real tribute to the Southwestern team,” says
Sara Weinert, vice president for communications. “Our communications
staff is only four persons, so to put out a product that is judged
better than entries
from universities that have staffs many times larger than ours is especially
In the publications category, for example,
The Southwesterner shared the gold award with Iowa State University,
and was judged above
entries from the University of Kansas, Fort Hays State University,
and the University of North Dakota. Other award-winning institutions
in the competition
included Kansas State University, Wichita State University, St.
Louis University, Nebraska Wesleyan, Colorado College, the University
Wyoming, and Emporia
New Professional Studies Majors
Two new majors have been approved for Southwestern
professional studies program, underlining the agility in learning professional
studies brings to the adult learner.
Degree completion majors in security
management and in operations management will be available both
online and in the traditional classroom settings, beginning
The two majors were chosen following extensive market
research, and were approved by the Professional Studies Academic
phasing out the production management degree that had been offered in professional
“We were intrigued by these majors because of the emerging employment opportunities
for graduates in these areas,” says Karen Pedersen, vice president for
professional studies. “We feel our learners will have a unique set of skills
that they will be able to apply in a full range of settings with both majors.
“We target an audience of adult learners, many
of them interested in second careers, and these majors are ideal
to that audience.”
The operations management major was selected
as a logical evolution of the production management degree. Demand
and need for the production
degree had largely waned, Pedersen explained, and the broader focus
of the operations
management degree will make it attractive to persons in settings
outside of manufacturing or production. Although some of the same
persons in operations management will be able to use their degrees
in service fields (such as banking), retail, or other fields.
management field is seen as one with huge potential, Pedersen says.
With increased attention being focused on this area, persons
with education and experience in security management are expected
to be in
“Security management degrees often are only offered
at a graduate level,” she
says. “We are unique in that our online program will allow
the focus of the major to be a generalist approach. If a learner
graduates with this degree,
the next logical step might be a graduate degree in some specialization
such as information security, or personal security. We wanted to
be able to provide
a solid baccalaureate program that transcended all of the areas
of security management, a solid foundation that is very employable.”
research completed before the degrees were proposed included
gathering input from a wide range of employers, trustees, graduates,
representatives, and other experts in the field. Benchmark colleges
were surveyed to compare
potential curricula and interest.
For more information on either
of the majors or on any professional studies or online programs,
visit Southwestern’s Web site at www.sckans.edu,
or call (316) 684-5335.
Camp Program Enters Fourth Year
A plan to make give summer opportunities available at Southwestern
College to talented high school and middle school students has entered
its fourth year, and the number and focus of offerings continues to
“The activities with youth really make the campus
come alive during the summer,” says Sue Simmons, director of
conferences and summer programs. “We
see a vitality on the hill that we simply don’t see if we don’t
reach out to persons who aren’t normally part of the college community.”
the summer of 2004 the SC Summer Academy will expand to include six camps
that have tie-ins to academic programs on the main campus. New this
are the P.A.L. (Primer for Aspiring Lawyers) camp, and The Gathering for
students with interest in Christian ministry.
The academy is aimed
at high school students, grades 9 to 12, with interest in specific
careers. Held during the month of June, it involves SC faculty
in teaching special topics and involving participants in hands-on activities.
The schedule includes:
• June 1-4, P.A.L. (Pre-Law) camp.
• June 8-11, athletic training camp.
• June 8-13, environmental biology camp.
• June 15-20, Rotary youth leadership/Leadership Southwestern camp.
• June 19-21, The Gathering youth ministry event.
• June 23-38, Horsefeathers and Applesauce high school workshop.
The academy offerings not only give participants the
opportunity to engage with a specific academic field, but also gives
them a taste of what
college will be like, Simmons adds.
“We encourage them to have a college-bound attitude, she says.”
Summer activities don’t end with the academy,
though. Music faculty will follow up last summer’s successful
day camps in flute and strings with offerings in voice and piano,
and coach Doug Hall will offer a boys basketball
camp. Middle schoolers who wish to participate with the Horsefeathers
and Applesauce company will have that opportunity June 23-28.
campus will be site of the state FCA football and basketball
camps, as well as camps offered by the Winfield Wrestling Club,
and the Winfield
and Humanities Council (girls basketball, volleyball, and football).
all, more than 1,000 students are expected to call SC home during
June and July.
“It’s exciting to have faculty and students
getting involved in the summer,” Simmons adds. “Seeing
the campus come alive this way is something I wouldn’t want
For more information on any of the summer offerings,
call Simmons at (620) 229-6141, or e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org.